Russo-Turkish War (1676–81)
The Russo–Turkish War of 1676–1681, a war between the Russian and Ottoman Empires, caused by Turkish expansionism in the second half of the 17th century. After having captured and devastated the region of Podolia in the course of the Polish–Turkish War of 1672–1676, the Ottoman government strove to spread its rule over all of the Right-bank Ukraine with the support of its vassal (since 1669), Hetman Petro Doroshenko. The latter’s pro-Turkish policy caused discontent among many Ukrainian Cossacks, which would elect Ivan Samoilovich (Hetman of the Left-bank Ukraine) as a sole Hetman of all Ukraine in 1674.
Doroshenko decided to fight back, and in 1676, his army of 12,000 men seized the city of Chyhyryn, counting on the approaching Turkish-Tatar army. However, the Russian and Ukrainian forces under the command of Samoilovich and Grigory Romodanovsky besieged Chyhyryn and made Doroshenko surrender. Leaving a garrison in Chyhyryn, the Russian and Ukrainian armies retreated to the left bank of the Dnieper. The Turkish Sultan appointed Yuri Khmelnitsky Hetman of the Right-bank Ukraine, who had been the Sultan’s prisoner at that time. In July 1677, the Sultan ordered his army (120,000 men) under the command of Ibrahim Pasha to advance towards Chyhyryn.
Ibrahim Pasha's army did not arrive at Chyhyryn until August 4, 1677. Samoilovich and Grigory Romodanovsky's forces rendezvoused on August 10, and by August 24 only had to cross the Sula River to reach Chyhyryn. On August 26–27, a skirmish between Muscovite and Ukrainian and Ottoman troops removed Ottoman observation posts and allowed the rest of the Muscovite and Ukrainian forces to cross the river unmolested. Muscovite and Ukrainian cavalry attacked and overwhelmed Ibrahim Pasha's camp, on the August 28, inflicting heavy casualties. The following day, Ibrahim lifted the siege of Chyhyryn and retreated to the Igul' River. Samoilovich and Grigory Romodanovsky relieved Chyhyryn on September 5. The Ottoman Army had lost 20,000 men and Ibrahim was imprisoned upon his return to Constantinople.
In July 1678, the Turkish army (approx. 80,000 men) of the Grand Vizier Kara Mustafa besieged Chyhyryn once again. The Russian and Ukrainian armies (20,000 men) broke through the Turkish covering force, however, the Turks had already managed to occupy Chyhyryn on August 11. The Russian army retreated over the Dnieper, beating off the pursuing Turkish army, which would finally leave them in peace.
- Paxton, John and John Traynor, Leaders of Russia and the Soviet Union, (Taylor & Francis Books Inc., 2004), 195.
- Davies, Brian L., Warfare, state and society on the Black Sea steppe, 1500-1700, (Routledge, 2007), 160.
- Davies, Brian L., Warfare, state and society on the Black Sea steppe, 1500-1700, 161.
- Paxton, John and John Traynor, Leaders of Russia and the Soviet Union, 195.
- Davies, Brian L., Warfare, state and society on the Black Sea steppe, 1500-1700, Routledge, 2007.
- Paxton, John and John Traynor, Leaders of Russia and the Soviet Union, Taylor & Francis Books Inc., 2004.